What distraction causes the most deadly crashes? Hint: It's not cell phones

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - The National Safety Council has designated April as "Distracted Driving Awareness Month" but you may not know which type of distraction causes the most deadly crashes.

No, it's not cell phones.

Have you ever driven your daily route to work, arrived safely and then realized you don't remember a single turn you took to get there.

Your head was full of, "What do I need to do at work today," or "What are we having for dinner tonight," or better yet "What vacation should I go on next."

Erie Insurance calls it distracted, inattentive or "lost in thought" driving.

You can also call it daydreaming and it's the number one cause of the 172,000 distracted driving fatalities over the past five years as tracked by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration.

Here is the breakdown which of the distractions cause the most fatalities according to Erie Insurance's review of the data for the past five years:

  1. Daydreaming 61%
  2. Cell Phone (texting, calling, dialing) 14%
  3. Outside person, object or event (rubbernecking) 6%
  4. Other occupants (kids or interacting with other passengers) 5%
  5. Using or reaching for devices (headphones, GPS, phone) 2%
  6. Eating or drinking 1%
  7. Adjusting music or temperature 1%

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